I love my mornings and my time with my Savior. I long to get up early Just to spend this
precious time in His presence especially with all my Christmas lights. This time of year I may be
reading different books or devotionals that share about Christmas. Right now I have my 2
regular devotionals and an advent devotional that speak so directly to me that I. know the Lord
must have arranged them just for me. One day this past week all 3 of the devotionals talked
about the same thing on the same day. I was listening! It's a subject He has talked to me about
a lot over the years. It's a fruit of the Spirit many have given me words about when they pray
for me. It's something I know I have but I don't always release it or walk in it - at least not
outwardly. And the day I heard it again 3 times I surrendered my heart to live my day ,
expressing this virtue to others. It's a word we sing about, see written on plaques and cards. Its
the gift of JOY! I desire to let His joy flow through me. I choose His joy but it's a fruit that
doesn't always come out of me as I desire evidently. All I can figure out is my natural behavior
is sometimes serious and focused. I can get so focused and intent on doing something that
others don't see my joy. So on this day when I heard it 3 times in 3 different ways I knew it was
from Him since my life has been so focused lately on the different situations of my life and I
knew I needed to release His joy in my life!
To strengthen those crushed by despair who mourn in Zion-to give them a beautiful
bouquet in the place of ashes, the oil of bliss instead of tears, and the mantle of joyous
praise instead of the spirit of heaviness. Because of this, they will be known
as Mighty Oaks of Righteousness, planted by Yahweh as a living display of his glory.
Isaiah 61:3 is a powerful verse. It talks about a spirit of heaviness. It's easy to get to this point
in the natural especially right now but it's not where we are to be. It says it is a spirit of
heaviness. It's a spirit. Heaviness is not from Him!
"Are you weary, carrying a heavy burden? Then come to me. I will refresh your life,
for I am your oasis. Simply join your life with mine. Learn my ways and you'll discover
that I'm gentle, humble, easy to please. You will find refreshment and rest in me. for
all that I require of you will be pleasant and easy to bear." Matthew 11:28-30
He has given us the mantle of JOYOUS praise! Think about it - it's a sprit that covers us
blankets us in heaviness - weighing us down, pushing us to not be able to walk upright.' It's
across our country and the world right now. BUT He has given us a mantle. Place this
magnificent mantle of joy on your shoulders. A mantle so full of His glory it can only lift you up
and up higher!
Then the same day He told me I needed to laugh! He said, "I created you with great joy and it's
time to embrace My Joy! . Wow! What a word on top of Isaiah 61: 3. He wants to peel back the
layers of heaviness that life has covered me with and embrace His joy! Then He gave this
serious, focused person this word! "Don't take life so serious that you don't enjoy it." I know I
have His Joy and I feel joyous but I also know I don't walk in His unspeakable joy.
"Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing,
ye rejoice with Joy unspeakable and full of glory:" 1 Peter 1:8 KJV
The King James Bible calls it joy unspeakable. Other versions say inexpressible joy.
"Though you have not seen Him, you love Him; and though you do not even see Him
now, you believe and trust in Him and you greatly rejoice and delight with
inexpressible and glorious Joy," 1 Peter 1:8 AMP
This is the joy that unlocks the chains that weigh us down. He tells us to laugh. To laugh out
"Now may God, the inspiration and fountain of hope, fill you to overflowing with
uncontainable joy and perfect peace as you trust in him. And may the power of the
Holy Spirit continually surround your life with his super-abundance until you radiate
with hope!" Romans 15:3
What a beautiful verse! What a life giving prayer. That's what there was on that first Christmas.
That was what Mary had when she heard that she would give birth to the Messiah. She was
filled to overflowing with uncontainable joy and perfect peace as she trusted. She
chose to express only joy! That's a choice I need to make daily. Not just to have joy expressed
through me but ONLY joy and not the other heaviness that blankets this world. The shepherds
were full of joy. That's my heart's desire, not just at this Christmas season but I desire to make
a choice to have unspeakable, inexpressible joy flowing through and from me every day.
This year is a bit different with all the situations in the world. The enemy would like nothing
more than to stop the joyous praises of God's children. No matter what we cannot do that. We
must praise Him even more. Sing louder. Sing more often.
"Go ahead-sing your brand-new song to the Lord! He is famous for his miracles and
marvels, for he is victorious through his mighty power and holy strength.
Everyone knows how God has saved us, for he has displayed his justice throughout
He never forgets to show us his love and faithfulness. How kind he has been to Israel!
All the nations know how he stands behind his people and how he saves his own.
So go ahead, everyone, and shout out your praises with joy! Break out of the box and
let loose with the most joyous sound of praise!
Sing your melody of praise to the Lord and make music like never before!
Blow those trumpets and shofars! Shout with joyous triumph before King Yahweh!
Let the ocean's waves join in the chorus with their roaring praise until everyone
everywhere shouts out in unison, "Glory to the Lord!"
Let the rivers and streams clap with applause as the mountains rise in a standing
ovation to join the mighty choir of exaltation. Look! Here he comes! The Lord and
judge of all the earth! He's coming to make things right and to do it fair and square.
And everyone will see that he does all things well!" Psalm 98:1-9
"Sing for joy, you heavens! Shout, you earth, and rejoice with dancing, shouting, and
glee! Burst into joyous songs, you mountains, for Yahweh has comforted
his beloved people. He will show tenderness and compassion to his suffering ones."
Isaiah 49: 13
"Do it again! Those Yahweh has set free will return to Zion and come celebrating with
songs of joy! They will be crowned with never-ending joy! Gladness and joy will
overwhelm them; despair and depression will disappear!" Isaiah 51:11
This Christmas Day make a choice to have one of the greatest gifts He gave us and that is His
joy. Inexpressible joy. Open that gift from Him before you open any other gift. No matter where
you are, who you are with don't let the blanket of heaviness steal your joy. It's a beautiful day
rejoicing in Him and remembering Who He is and the reason He came to earth that day. I'm so
thankful He has given us this day to celebrate Him and His love. Enjoy it to the fullest!
Merry Christmas with all our love to you!